Blakbird

[GBC] The Akiyuki Project

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He used a 1x2 beam with bar

Do you have a part number? I'm not sure what you mean by that description. You mean this thing?

85940.jpg

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Instructions for Akiyuki's Zig-Zag Lift Module are now tested and complete and are available here along with a Brickstore parts list.

  • 39 pages
  • 800 parts
640x480.jpg

Some of the credit for reverse engineering this module goes to jesuskyr who did the work making the LDraw file based on Akiyuki's video and creating most of the instruction steps. Based on Akiyuki's own comments (and the comments of others) that this module has problems with jamming, I then made some updates to reflect a later version as shown in Akiyuki's setup from 2012:

  • Added an indexer to allow only a single ball input at a time
  • Added the zig-zag output ramp
  • Made the bottom of the module black to coordinate better with other modules

If you've been following this thread then you know that I had a lot of trouble with this module. The first problem was that "version 2" is only seen in a single video for a couple of seconds so figuring out the output ramp and indexer took a while. The next problem was that my module didn't work at all once built. The problem turned out to be the use of 1x2x2 panels with side supports when I needed the older version without side supports. It is very important when you build this module that you use the old version! Thanks to 9V_system for helping me with some troubleshooting.

The timing of the indexer is important, but if you build it as shown in the instructions it will already be set. The only other setting is the lateral position of the output ramp. Slide it side to side until the balls exit smoothly.

The module works very well if built straight. Before attaching the motor, try driving it by hand and lifting a load of balls. It should take almost no torque to function. If you feel any drag, something is wrong. If the module does jam while running it is probably because there are two balls in a single circuit. If this happens, you have to significantly disassemble the module to get the balls out and clear the jam.

This module has a very small input hopper and so works best with something that feeds in balls at a continuous slow rate rather than in batches. I found that it works excellent downstream of the basket shooter.

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Big thanks to BlackBird (instructions), TheRebricker (part list) and of course Akiuki (original idea)... Here is my stuck ball contraption.

Edited by alanburchill

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Big thanks to BlackBird (instructions), TheRebricker (part list) and of course Akiuki (original idea)... Here is my stuck ball contraption.

Looks great! Glad you got it to work. I'm always happy to hear that people are actually making use of the results of all this work.

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@blakbird are you going to do spiral lift type 2 now? I have ordered all the parts and hope to have it built in the next week or so.

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@blakbird are you going to do spiral lift type 2 now? I have ordered all the parts and hope to have it built in the next week or so.

I just sent Blakbird the LDD file of the Spiral Lift Type 2 today. I brick built most of it before designing it in LDD. I didn't have all the needed tubes, so I couldn't fully test it, but in the parts where I could I tested everything and it works. The LDD is built to single height (3 tracks) so lets see if Blakbird releases single or double height instructions. I could see either of them being useful.

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@blakbird are you going to do spiral lift type 2 now? I have ordered all the parts and hope to have it built in the next week or so.

Yes, that is next on my list.

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Yes, that is next on my list.

nice I have been working on the double height ldd file and have made some progress

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I am missing the Zigzag stairs in the list, cute little fellow! ;-)

Thanks for the note. I'm not sure how I missed that one. I will add it to the list. This module was improved over the years. The most recent version I can find can be seen at 1:04.

This looks like a VERY simple module. I wonder why it is not included in later layouts? I suspect he intends to improve this one. There is generally an input, an interesting motion, and an output. This module has only the middle part. Perhaps it will be added to an interesting input and output in the future.

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Instructions for Akiyuki's Ball Factory Module are now tested and complete and are available here along with a Brickstore parts list.

  • 207 pages
  • 4428 parts
640x360.jpg

This model was reverse engineered by The ReBricker and I build it and modeled it from his videos. The whole story and an extensive review can be found in another thread, so I won't repeat it here. More recently, I've created a set of PDF instructions for building the model. Note that the build requires complex timing setup and is therefore the PDF is not independent and the videos are still needed. I've linked to a special timing video created by The ReBricker to aid the builder.

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Amazing! I'm so happy to see it come together!!!! What a build! Again, don't try this as a first GBC build, unless you want to learn through "Trial by terror!" You need to know your Technic very well to attack this one! I wouldn't even put an age range on this, it's more of a personality type that would enjoy it! Someone who loves a challenge, deals well with frustration and who enjoys tinkering with something to keep it working! Great work on the instructions Blakbird!

I was just thinking, it may be interesting to also post in the first post under each (Complete or not) the original video link to Akiyuki's videos, both out of respect to him and as a tribute of where we started, to where we are now! Just a link though and not an inline video as that would make that post INSANELY huge! Up to you, it's your post. :) You do include the video in each post I see... so maybe not required...

Edited by TheRebricker

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Great thanks to this instructions , the videos of rebricker is fine too , but with pdf is number one :grin:

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I have been lurking the forums, and especially this thread for a while now.

Due to the excellent work of TheRebricker, I was able to build the Ball Factory ( Which is also my first module :p ). I use 14mm plastic beads ordered from a necklace shop, and everything seems to work quite well.

However, I have found a few issues with the spiral lift:

- The build instructions show some gaps, in both the video and the pdf of Blackbird ( page 173, step 14, the 2x4 brick and the 2x6 plates are not on the same height )

- Balls can get stuck between moving parts, the space between the rotating liftarms and the structure is sometimes only one stud, between which balls can get stuck.

- Sometimes balls jam on the connector which holds the hose, this connector seems to stick out just enough that my plastic beads can get stuck on it.

I have tried to solve issue 1, and I have created a modified construction to hold the 1x6 arches in place. If anyone is interested I can post what I have created.

I also have widened the base by 2 studs, to make sure that there is always a 2 stud gap between the liftarms and the structure.

Now for the last issue, I am a bit lost. I have not found a way to make the transition into the ribbed hose more smooth.

Do you have any ideas on how to make improvements to this part of the spiral?

I have found a way to make the transition in to the ribbed hose a bit more smooth, this was done by using 1 x 2 liftarm with axle hole ( part 41677 ) on the base of the spiral ( in the pdf on page 180 ) instead of the bushings, and point them in the direction of rotation. In this way, the balls will get lifted onto the slope alot higher, and are not able to get stuck beneeth the 4x4 round bricks. I think this is only needed if you run the module with non lego balls, but I could make some pictures of what I have done.

Edited by ZjosH

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@blakbird do you plan to do the single or double length spiral lift? or are you going to do both? also how's progress?

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There was an earlier version of the ball factory, with a very different wheel design. I can't find it in youtube. Anyone has a link to it?

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Thanks, but that's not the one. The one I'm thinking of has a very 'different' large wheel (the one that holds the 8 containers). I'll keep looking and come back when I find it.

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Hello everyone,

Just a quick word for those who want to build the Marble Run. I have built it today using Blackbird's excellent instructions. For the rails I used the 28L Rigid Hose in Reddish Brown that is found in Jabba's Sail Barge and Ewok Village and which is still available at Lego Bricks and Parts for 0.97 € (in France at least). Exactly 52 were enough for the whole run (11,64 m), no cutting necessary and at the bottom of the run the inner rail is longer than the outer one by less than 1 cm.

If you build your Marble Run that way, you will need exactly 45 Plate 1x2 with Clips Horizontal (60470).

I agree reddish brown is not the best possible colour for the Marble Run, but since I didn't find usable cheap non-Lego hose in my area (and I'm always reluctant in using non-Lego parts anyway) I think it's one of the best options.

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@blakbird do you plan to do the single or double length spiral lift? or are you going to do both? also how's progress?

Already asked and answered:

@blakbird im going to stick my hand up and do the spiral lift type 2 but I have some questions:

1 should I do the extended version or the smaller version?

2 ramp or no ramp?

I would recommend the extended version. I think it needs a ramp in order to be usable.

As for progress, I haven't done anything yet. The LDD file is very incomplete so I was waiting for you to finish it as described below.

Looks like a good start but still a long way to go. It needs the input hopper, the output ramp, the roller guides at the top and bottom, the top rails, and of course the tracks. I can't see whether or not there should be another set of sprockets in the middle based on the video, but it would make sense for them to be there because there does not appear to be a physical connection between the upper 3 tracks and the lower 3 tracks.

nice I have been working on the double height ldd file and have made some progress

However, I have found a few issues with the spiral lift:

- The build instructions show some gaps, in both the video and the pdf of Blackbird ( page 173, step 14, the 2x4 brick and the 2x6 plates are not on the same height )

Those gaps are real. There is not perfect alignment between the SNOT parts. I think there is about a 2 LDU mismatch. However, in the physical build this mismatch doesn't really matter.

- Balls can get stuck between moving parts, the space between the rotating liftarms and the structure is sometimes only one stud, between which balls can get stuck.

Are we still talking about the spiral lift? I have never had any balls jam in the lift.

- Sometimes balls jam on the connector which holds the hose, this connector seems to stick out just enough that my plastic beads can get stuck on it.

Again, I have never had this happen. This may be the result of the non-LEGO beads you are using.

I also have widened the base by 2 studs, to make sure that there is always a 2 stud gap between the liftarms and the structure.

I have found a way to make the transition in to the ribbed hose a bit more smooth, this was done by using 1 x 2 liftarm with axle hole ( part 41677 ) on the base of the spiral ( in the pdf on page 180 ) instead of the bushings, and point them in the direction of rotation. In this way, the balls will get lifted onto the slope alot higher, and are not able to get stuck beneeth the 4x4 round bricks. I think this is only needed if you run the module with non lego balls, but I could make some pictures of what I have done.

Some pictures would be helpful because I'm not quite sure what you mean.

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Are we still talking about the spiral lift? I have never had any balls jam in the lift.

Again, I have never had this happen. This may be the result of the non-LEGO beads you are using.

I did notice that the beads are 14mm (not sure on their tolerance though, it may be +/- 1mm) and the Lego balls I believe are 14.1mm exactly. That's the most common place I found the beads jammed and showed their inaccuracy and is the #1 reason why I never recommended them for the ball factory.

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